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Spring Into The Season For Home Improvement

May 1, 2008
If you're like me, you've been sitting around the house all winter keeping a mental list of the home improvement projects you want to start. Now that spring is here, it's time to get started. Not only will home improvements beautify your daily surroundings, they also add to the resale value of your home. So, there's no time like the present to pull out a paintbrush or two and start making home improvements.

The easiest and least expensive way to dramatically improve both the exterior and the interior of a home is with paint. A fresh coat of paint breathes new life into a tired looking living room. Nothing says curb appeal like a gorgeous exterior color. To get things started, buy some masking tape, tarps, rollers, brushes, paint, spackle and sandpaper.

Touch up any cracks in the walls with the spackle and sandpaper, tape off your carpeting and sideboards, and get to painting. Remember to select a neutral shade that will suit a wide range of tastes if you intend to sell your home anytime in the near future.

Once the walls are gleaming and gorgeous with their new paint jobs, take a good look at your old lighting fixtures and hardware. Does the brown stained-glass chandelier in the kitchen look more like it belongs in the local pizzeria than in a high-end home magazine? Perhaps a trip to the hardware store is in order. You can replace a light fixture and modernize a room for less than $100 and an hour of work. It will totally change the ambiance of the room. It can even change the atmosphere of the whole home if the fixture is in a highly visible spot. The same is true for hardware; changing doorknobs and drawer hardware can shave years off the appearance of your home.

Now that you're seeing your home in a new light, so to speak, let's give some attention to your cabinetry and countertops. Are they still looking like a country kitchen from the 1980s? Well, installing new cabinets is a lot of work and costs a pretty penny. What about paint or new hardware for the cabinets? It's possible that painting them a dark gray and adding some glass panels will change their look entirely.

Try to improve your cabinets without breaking the budget. Then, use the money you save on your cabinets to renovate your countertops. Granite has dropped dramatically in price in recent years, and looks dynamite. Have professional installers give you an estimate on the cost for new countertops per square foot. If granite is still a bit out of your price range, laminate countertops are an affordable option that will make your kitchen shine again. Even putting tile over your old countertops is a viable option if you're trying to keep your home improvements on a budget and renovate your kitchen on the cheap.

Spring is in the air, and it's the perfect season to get started on home improvement projects. Plant some new shrubs, paint your bathrooms, change old light fixtures and add some spice to your kitchen. You'll benefit from the beauty of your home improvements every day, and all of your hard work will ultimately add to the resale value of your home.
About the Author
Lee Starusta president of YourContractorDirect.com Local Contractors
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